Earthquake in Turkey

Updated February 21, 2017 | Factmonster Staff

Learn earthquake basics in Earthquakes 101.

Earthquake epicenter: near Izmit, an industrial city about 55 miles east of Istanbul on the Sea of Marmara.

Aftershocks: at least 300 aftershocks followed in the first 48 hours—the largest reported to have been a magnitude of 5.5.

Magnitude: estimated between 7.4 and 7.9

The earthquake on August 17, 1999, took more than 14,000 lives.

Cause: this region of Turkey rests above the North Anatolian fault, which is wedged between two huge tectonic plates, Eurasia and Africa/Middle East. As the plates grind against each other they put pressure on the North Anatolian fault, which periodically ruptures.

Casualties: by Monday, August 23, the official crisis center reported 12,148 dead. On Tuesday, August 24, CNN reported more than 14,000 dead and 200,000 homeless.

Earthquake Links/Relief Organizations
Turkey Message Board

American Red Cross International Response Fund

Number of Earthquakes Worldwide, 1987-1998, and Mortality Figures

Major Earthquakes Around the World, 1998

Major Earthquakes Around the World, 1999

The Ten Largest Earthquakes of the Century

The Fifteen Largest Earthquakes in the U.S.

The Fifteen Largest Earthquakes in the Contiguous United States
American Jewish World Service

Catholic Relief Services


Earthquakes 101

Earthquake and Volcanic Eruptions

Encyclopedia: Earthquakes

Encyclopedia: Tsunami


Disaster Quiz

Floods, Avalanches, and Tidal Waves